How to start a car valeting business

If you’re passionate about cars, have strong attention to detail and excellent customer service skills, a car valet business could be for you…

Useful links

What is a car valeting business and who is it suited to?
Creating a car valeting business plan
Car valeting rules and regulations
How much does it cost to start a car valeting business?
How much can you earn running a car valeting business?
Tips and useful contacts

How much can you earn running a car valeting business?

There are many variables that could impact the profitability of your car valeting business, ranging from local demand to the type of vehicles you choose to work with and your approach to marketing your business.

CK Detailing’s Keir says that the money you make depends largely “on your location” and “the level of care you carry out”, but suggests that a standard valet “can expect to earn about £25 to £35 for” for around one to two hours work.

If you plan to enter the luxury car detailing market – which CK Detailing operates in – and carry out premium car details “you can earn from a few hundred to the thousand pound mark per detail”.

Keir adds that the best way to earn more from car valeting is simply to do a good job: “The car care industry relies heavily on word of mouth. If you’re the best and people know about you, they will be willing to pay that bit more”.

You should always be motivated to carry out work to the best of your abilities and to the best industry standards. This also goes for any employees you take on: provide ongoing training to teach them best practice and ensure your car valeting business is associated with a quality service.

Action point:
See if you can get a Start Up Loan to help you start a business idea
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Keir also warns that you need to think carefully about your price point to ensure you attract customers: “When I initially set up my car care company I tried to undercut the competition, this backfired for me. People don’t mind paying more for a better service. Don’t overcharge though; people aren’t going to use your business until you have a good reputation”.

“Profits depend on the type of car valeting business”, explains iValet UK’s Tyler, “but an individual service provider can expect to profit around £8,000 trading first year from start-up or around £25,000 first year with a franchise”.

Managing growth can be challenging for a new start-up and ensuring you maintain a steady cash flow is vital to keep your car valet business running smoothly. Think about how to sensibly reinvest your profits to grow organically as you build your reputation locally and beyond.

Tyler continues: “The easiest mistake is to wait for the phone to ring, just because you have a website and some social media adverts. Be active – knock on neighbours doors and build a reputation”.

Even in an increasingly digital world, it’s important not forget the importance of old fashioned marketing methods such as drop-door marketing, when growing your company, especially when you work in a customer-facing role that relies largely on local trade.

“Being a recognisable face for your business gives it a human side and can give you the edge over local competition.

Now you have all the knowledge you need to establish a successful car valeting company, take note of these useful tips and contacts for the car valeting industry…


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